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Myanmar LONDON: Myanmar pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi met British heir to the throne Prince Charles on Thursday ahead of her historic address to both houses of parliament. Her royal encounter on the third day of her first trip to Britain in 24 years came as the British government confirmed it had invited Myanmar's reformist president Thein Sein to visit London. "He is due to visit the UK in the coming months to continue the discussions they began when the Prime Minister was in Burma in April," said a spokesman for Cameron. Downing Street said Suu Kyi was "aware of the invitation." Nobel peace laureate Suu Kyi, who is visiting Britain for a week as part of a sweep through Europe, met Charles and his wife Camilla at their Clarence House residence in London. Charles knew Suu Kyi's late English husband Michael Aris, and became patron of the Tibet expert's Memorial Trust for Tibetan and ...

South Korea, Japan, US begin drill amid North Korea protest  SEOUL: South Korea, Japan and the United States Thursday began a joint naval exercise denounced by North Korea as a "reckless provocation". Seoul's defence ministry said the two-day drill involving destroyers, supply ships and helicopters would practise humanitarian operations such as search and rescue missions. It said no live-fire exercises were planned. But it comes at a time of rising tensions with the North following Pyongyang's failed rocket launch in April -- seen by the US and ...
Vietnam entrepreneurs find fertile ground online HANOI: Vietnam's young, tech-savvy population is turning to the Internet to break out of an economic system stifled by decades of communist rule, leading to a boom in e-commerce. Internet entrepreneur Thao Phuong earns twice as much money each month selling tropical fruit online to Hanoi housewives as she does from her day job working at a local post office. The 28-year-old buys fruit such as pomelo, oranges and durian direct from farmers, markets it in Vietnamese-language ...
US, New Zealand sign defence agreement  WELLINGTON: New Zealand and the United States have signed an agreement to bolster defence co-operation in the Asia-Pacific region, both governments said on Wednesday, signalling a further thaw in relations after a 25-year stand-off. The two countries said they would hold regular high-level dialogue and co-operate on maritime security, counter-terrorism, and peacekeeping operations, paving the way to closer military ties between Washington and Wellington. "This high-level arrangement recognises the significant security co-operation that exists between New Zealand ...
Powerful typhoon cuts across Japan  TOKYO: A powerful typhoon bringing heavy rain and strong winds cut across Japan's main island of Honshu Tuesday, the weather agency said, as flights were cancelled and evacuations ordered. About 10,400 people in coastal Ishinomaki, hit by last year's earthquake and tsunami, were advised to evacuate to higher ground ahead of the typhoon's arrival, which would coincide with rises in the tide, a city official said. The typhoon made landfall on the tip of the Pacific peninsula ...
Cambodia arrests Frenchman linked to China scandal  PHNOM PENH: A French architect with ties to disgraced Chinese politician Bo Xilai has been arrested in Cambodia, the French embassy said Tuesday, in a new twist to China's biggest political scandal in decades. Cambodian police said the arrest of Patrick Devillers was carried out with the cooperation of Beijing, which is seeking his extradition. "We've been informed by the Cambodian authorities of the arrest of our compatriot Mr. Devillers," a French embassy spokeswoman told AFP. Officials were ...
58 missing after Indonesia boat sinks: rescuers JAKARTA: Rescuers said 58 people were still missing two days after a wooden boat sank off eastern Indonesia -- revising sharply upwards the number of people on board the vessel. "The latest update we have so far is that the boat was carrying 70 passengers when it sank. With 12 people rescued, we still have 58 missing," rescue official Rebekka Gultom told AFP, adding that those numbers include crew members. Search and rescue officials said Sunday that ...

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